Trainee of the Year

Sponsored by Apprentice Employment Network.

Winner: Michael Perez - Certificate II in Telecommunications

Employer: SKILLED Group
Host employer: Telstra
Registered training provider: Ramsden Telecommunications Training

Michael achieved good grades in senior school, especially in maths and the sciences, but couldn’t see how his school-based learning would translate to real life. But with his traineeship in Telecommunications, his skills in 'getting the numbers right' are proving their benefit and he is able to put his theoretical knowledge into practice.

He is an enthusiastic proponent of the value of traineeships and their role in developing a more skilled and efficient workforce that is relevant to industry needs. Michael says on-the-job training combined with formal learning means trainees are fully competent when they transition into qualified positions.

Michael says it’s been six years since he graduated high school, but it is only now he is discovering the value of learning. His traineeship has instilled a desire to learn more, which he sees reflected in the quality of his work. He says undertaking vocational education is a great start to a fulfilling career path.

Runner up: Drew Thomas - Certificate IV in Civil Construction Supervision

Employer: Group Training NT (GTNT)
Registered training provider: TAFE NSW, Riverina Institute

Drew says the saying 'Short term pain for long term gain' describes his approach to life and his career. He worked in the building construction industry before a serious car accident saw him off work for 12 months. While recuperating he defined his long-term goal as managing projects in the civil construction industry and decided to apply for a traineeship.

Drew gained his traineeship with the Department of Infrastructure in 2013 and his outstanding work and achievements have been recognised with many awards, including the Mike Makepeace High Achiever Award Civil Supervision. His pathway from labourer to trainee to now a permanent project officer position has given him an appreciation of the many aspects of the industry.

Drew has developed to the stage where he now supervises construction projects and teams. His training has helped him develop confidence in his communications. He mentors new trainees and apprentices and offers guidance, support and the benefit of his learning experiences.

Last updated: 24 June 2019

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